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The Sconecutter

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This is Fred Ball for Zions Bank, speaking on business.

The Sconecutter, Utah’s family owned and grown restaurants, turns 25 years old this year. Celebrations will be held tomorrow at each of the 11 stores, and at the Stinger’s baseball game tomorrow night. And Gov. Leavitt has proclaimed this entire week as “The Sconecutter Week.”

The Barton family of Utah first conceived the idea of scones and scone sandwiches back in the early 1970s. On June 22, 1977, the first Sconecutter opened at 271 South Main Street in Salt Lake City.

It was the first restaurant in Utah to stay open 24 hours a day because, according to Jerald Warner, who co-owns the company with his wife Vickie, “they didn’t want customers to have to guess when they would be open.”

It was a marketing strategy ahead of its time as now competitors have extended their hours. But in many ways, The Sconecutter has always been ahead of the rest. Since day one, the restaurant has offered a choice of wheat or white scones, and for 20 years it has featured what have recently become trendy items; wraps, pitas and yogurt. And at The Sconecutter, customers have always been allowed to choose how to garnish their scones. Needless to say, hot honey butter scones are the restaurant’s most popular item.

The idea of serving scones as an alternative to the hamburger bun has worked. The company now enjoys annual revenue of $7 million and employs about 240 people.

The Warners, who have been married 32 years, have been partners in The Sconecutter since it opened. Vickie is president and oversees the company’s operations and the stores. Jerald serves as vice president and manages accounting and administration.

The Warners told me that they created The Sconecutter to be an in-between fast-food hamburger chain and a sit-down restaurant. They have positioned themselves in that way to fill a gap. They said they have also held back on franchising because they didn’t want to lose control of their product. Well, they certainly know what they’re doing and we’re glad they do.

Happy 25th Birthday to The Sconecutter and may they have another successful 25.

For Zions Bank, I'm Fred Ball. I'm speaking on business.

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